(Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

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TheoO

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby TheoO » Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:35 am

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:People who are happy at V5s are mentally ill, which explains why every V5 partner is mentally ill.


Probably also the unsociable, who use the cover of long work hours to hide the fact that they have no friends.

For what it's worth, I actually have met a lot of people who claim to really enjoy working at their firm recently. What should I make of these people?

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby Bronte » Tue Nov 18, 2014 1:04 am

Voyager wrote:Well, here's the thing: if I JUST cited turnover rates or JUST cited depression rates or JUST cited alcohol abuse rates, I might see your point. But all 3 when coupled with the experiences of my classmates? Man, seems pretty convincing that law is a miserable existence and unsustainable.


Multiple unconvincing points don't make a good argument. It's well known that turnover in consulting is similar or worse. Likewise, mental health issues are common among professionals, including doctors, lawyers, and bankers.

As to your anecdotal evidence, I can confirm from experience that a lot of people are unsatisfied in big law. The main reason is probably that, like consulting and banking, the hours and stress are brutal. In big law, another significant factor is that a lot of people go to law school with no interest in business or with a public-interest focus that is outright anti-business. Then they end up defending class actions or working on IPOs because it's the path of least resistance. People that pursue an MBA are much more likely to have an interest in business--but not so much if they pursue an MBA instead of law school based on advice that treats them as fungible.

It's wise to take a hard look at whether law school is a good idea and to face some of the harsh realities of the profession. But you're wildly overstating your case in black-and-white terms, consistent with countless trolls and scambloggers that have come before you. It's not helpful.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby prezidentv8 » Tue Nov 18, 2014 1:56 am

Wait, there are people arguing that there is something about this career path that isn't horribly unhealthy, mentally damaging, or physically fattenizing?

Huh.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby fats provolone » Tue Nov 18, 2014 1:59 am

prezidentv8 wrote:Wait, there are people arguing that there is something about this career path that isn't horribly unhealthy, mentally damaging, or physically fattenizing?

Huh.

guess you haven't been listening to the tls echo chamber bro. we're all in our dream jobs and can't wait to make partner. dunno what all this talk of "attrition" is about. must be people leaving to take care of ailing family members or do full-time volunteer work.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby Johann » Tue Nov 18, 2014 2:14 am

prezidentv8 wrote:Wait, there are people arguing that there is something about this career path that isn't horribly unhealthy, mentally damaging, or physically fattenizing?

Huh.


It's more like the only thing we hate more than our lives is someone who shits on law without working in law.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby WhirledWorld » Tue Nov 18, 2014 11:55 am

TheoO wrote:
Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:People who are happy at V5s are mentally ill, which explains why every V5 partner is mentally ill.


Probably also the unsociable, who use the cover of long work hours to hide the fact that they have no friends.

For what it's worth, I actually have met a lot of people who claim to really enjoy working at their firm recently. What should I make of these people?


Somewhat related -- I find that extroverts can often be less happy in biglaw, because working all-day in their office with little interaction besides conference calls can get under their skin.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby bl1nds1ght » Tue Nov 18, 2014 7:39 pm

Voyager wrote:Well, as others have fairly pointed out, I never went to business school so I am not an expert on how to get admitted. For instance, I don't know how schools look at GPA/GMAT splitters. Not trying to dodge your question, but I think you should probably head over to a pre-MBA forum.

I also don't know how business schools balance GPA vs work experience. I do know that they take your pre-MBA background very seriously and are looking for a diverse range of work experiences to fill the class.

I can say that I have seen resumes of grads from top business schools whose work background was not Goldman Sachs/McKinsey.

Thanks for your response. I will definitely read more on Wall Street Oasis, but I hate how that forum charges for the full content.

Good luck.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby Voyager » Sat Nov 22, 2014 11:53 pm

JohannDeMann wrote:
prezidentv8 wrote:Wait, there are people arguing that there is something about this career path that isn't horribly unhealthy, mentally damaging, or physically fattenizing?

Huh.


It's more like the only thing we hate more than our lives is someone who shits on law without working in law.


But none of you have even passed the bar yet! I did that. I also did an SA stint at a V50 and internships with several prosecutor offices.

So... wtf?

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby FSK » Sun Nov 23, 2014 12:16 am

Voyager, I think you and your threads are great. I wish I could have read one 2 years ago before going to school. Keep at it.
Last edited by FSK on Sat Jan 27, 2018 5:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby FlamingDragon » Sun Nov 23, 2014 12:31 am

Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby Instinctive » Sun Nov 23, 2014 12:53 am

FlamingDragon wrote:Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.


Just FYI, starting salary at MBB with an APD or an MBA is way higher than what you get coming out of undergrad. I want to say starting salary at MBB is around 130k, with retirement matching that seems to outdo what biglaw offers, as well as better and more attainable bonuses. Not to mention the travel rewards and such you rack up, plus per diem when traveling.

Biglaw may turn out to be more money depending on who and where you are, but it's nowhere near the gap you make it seem to be. Your college classmates should have started around 80k, including signing bonus. That's not what an APD or an MBA starts at.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby Voyager » Sun Nov 23, 2014 3:00 am

FlamingDragon wrote:Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.


Starting pay was $135k base with a $20k signing bonus, a $20k-$30k performance bonus and ANOTHER $15k bonus put into a retirement account for you yearly.

All in, 1st year made $190k. Year 2 closer to $180k (raise, but not signing bonus).

You make partner in ~7 years. New partners are making $700k.

I left the firm before then and am clearing $250k, all in, similar to my 4th year buddies ONLY because of the good bonuses paid out by biglaw this year. Now I have minimal travel (few days a quarter) and work 50 hour work weeks.

Finally, the work is just more interesting at MBB. It is not "excel BS". It is solving interesting problems. You also get direct client interaction.

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Clearly

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby Clearly » Sun Nov 23, 2014 4:49 am

Is this a thing from MVP? Grades needed?

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby bearsfan23 » Sun Nov 23, 2014 5:13 am

Voyager wrote:
FlamingDragon wrote:Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.


Starting pay was $135k base with a $20k signing bonus, a $20k-$30k performance bonus and ANOTHER $15k bonus put into a retirement account for you yearly.

All in, 1st year made $190k. Year 2 closer to $180k (raise, but not signing bonus).

You make partner in ~7 years. New partners are making $700k.

I left the firm before then and am clearing $250k, all in, similar to my 4th year buddies ONLY because of the good bonuses paid out by biglaw this year. Now I have minimal travel (few days a quarter) and work 50 hour work weeks.

Finally, the work is just more interesting at MBB. It is not "excel BS". It is solving interesting problems. You also get direct client interaction.


Do you work in admissions for a MBA program or something? B/c I've literally never heard anyone have such an optimistic view of consulting. A few things you're wrong on:

1. Consulting work is more "interesting"? WTF, everyone I know who works in consulting talks about how excruciately boring it is, unless you really like math.
2. You're acting like making a partner is guaranteed, which it definitely isn't.
3. You're ridiculously downplaying the amount of travel MBB people do in their first few years. This is the major reason people I know in the industry hate it. Maybe you're only working "50 hours" a week, but you're on the road so much that a lot of your free time isn't really free time.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby WhirledWorld » Mon Nov 24, 2014 11:08 pm

Voyager wrote:
FlamingDragon wrote:Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.


Starting pay was $135k base with a $20k signing bonus, a $20k-$30k performance bonus and ANOTHER $15k bonus put into a retirement account for you yearly.

All in, 1st year made $190k. Year 2 closer to $180k (raise, but not signing bonus).

You make partner in ~7 years. New partners are making $700k.

I left the firm before then and am clearing $250k, all in, similar to my 4th year buddies ONLY because of the good bonuses paid out by biglaw this year. Now I have minimal travel (few days a quarter) and work 50 hour work weeks.

Finally, the work is just more interesting at MBB. It is not "excel BS". It is solving interesting problems. You also get direct client interaction.


Voyager wrote:
FlamingDragon wrote:Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.


Starting pay was $135k base with a $20k signing bonus, a $20k-$30k performance bonus and ANOTHER $15k bonus put into a retirement account for you yearly.

All in, 1st year made $190k. Year 2 closer to $180k (raise, but not signing bonus).

You make partner in ~7 years. New partners are making $700k.

I left the firm before then and am clearing $250k, all in, similar to my 4th year buddies ONLY because of the good bonuses paid out by biglaw this year. Now I have minimal travel (few days a quarter) and work 50 hour work weeks.

Finally, the work is just more interesting at MBB. It is not "excel BS". It is solving interesting problems. You also get direct client interaction.


A few clarifications.

1. Starting comp is a bit higher in law. Base comp right now for new associates is closer to 120k than 135k. You do get the 20k signing bonus and the 20-40k (usually 20k) performance bonus, and the retirement pay-in. Personally, I'd take the 175k in cash, but it probably shouldn't be anyone's decision point.

2. I'd agree that strategy is more interesting than law from a bird's eye view, but the day-to-day work is equally a grind. Putting together a slide deck in a factory basement in Peoria is not interesting.

3. I'll be frank: MBB consulting just isn't an option for 99% of people reading this thread. Conservatively, there are about 2,000 biglaw associate openings in NYC each year for JD candidates. Do you know how many JD-only-candidates got a job at MBB in NYC two years ago? One. One dude. I say this because I know the guy -- he went to Harvard and joined McK (Bain and BCG NYC only hired MBA candidates). But even if you get into Harvard Business School, your shot at MBB is still only like 30%. MBB Consulting is as much an option for people reading this as Blackstone associate positions are an option.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby jbagelboy » Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:04 am

WhirledWorld wrote:
Voyager wrote:
FlamingDragon wrote:Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.


Starting pay was $135k base with a $20k signing bonus, a $20k-$30k performance bonus and ANOTHER $15k bonus put into a retirement account for you yearly.

All in, 1st year made $190k. Year 2 closer to $180k (raise, but not signing bonus).

You make partner in ~7 years. New partners are making $700k.

I left the firm before then and am clearing $250k, all in, similar to my 4th year buddies ONLY because of the good bonuses paid out by biglaw this year. Now I have minimal travel (few days a quarter) and work 50 hour work weeks.

Finally, the work is just more interesting at MBB. It is not "excel BS". It is solving interesting problems. You also get direct client interaction.


Voyager wrote:
FlamingDragon wrote:Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.


Starting pay was $135k base with a $20k signing bonus, a $20k-$30k performance bonus and ANOTHER $15k bonus put into a retirement account for you yearly.

All in, 1st year made $190k. Year 2 closer to $180k (raise, but not signing bonus).

You make partner in ~7 years. New partners are making $700k.

I left the firm before then and am clearing $250k, all in, similar to my 4th year buddies ONLY because of the good bonuses paid out by biglaw this year. Now I have minimal travel (few days a quarter) and work 50 hour work weeks.

Finally, the work is just more interesting at MBB. It is not "excel BS". It is solving interesting problems. You also get direct client interaction.


A few clarifications.

1. Starting comp is a bit higher in law. Base comp right now for new associates is closer to 120k than 135k. You do get the 20k signing bonus and the 20-40k (usually 20k) performance bonus, and the retirement pay-in. Personally, I'd take the 175k in cash, but it probably shouldn't be anyone's decision point.

2. I'd agree that strategy is more interesting than law from a bird's eye view, but the day-to-day work is equally a grind. Putting together a slide deck in a factory basement in Peoria is not interesting.

3. I'll be frank: MBB consulting just isn't an option for 99% of people reading this thread. Conservatively, there are about 2,000 biglaw associate openings in NYC each year for JD candidates. Do you know how many JD-only-candidates got a job at MBB in NYC two years ago? One. One dude. I say this because I know the guy -- he went to Harvard and joined McK (Bain and BCG NYC only hired MBA candidates). But even if you get into Harvard Business School, your shot at MBB is still only like 30%. MBB Consulting is as much an option for people reading this as Blackstone associate positions are an option.


I agree and second a lot of your points with a few modifications and notes, just for the audience of 0Ls/1Ls looking on.

McKinsey was the only consulting firm that actually came to campus and actively recruited us with lunches/dinners and at EIP, but Boston Consulting Group did a resume drop and they accept applications from JD students, so it's not technically accurate to say their NY office only hires MBA candidates. Anecdotally, I also know from a personal contact that they are open to/have taken JDs from at least Harvard and Columbia, and probably other schools too.

Also, this website has a bizarre hangup with acronyms like "MBB". The field of consulting firms that do challenging and interesting work is far more encompassing. It's a little like repeating the only corporate law firms as Cravath, Davis Polk and S&C (very flawed analogy but at least somewhat descriptive). Some will have programs exclusively for undergrads and MBAs, some will be broader. The firm where I was an analyst was not one of these three but it was just a tier below, and we had JDs that started at the associate/manager level. Of course, some firms will have a specific industry clientele and they won't all be strategy work, but if you are seriously considering consulting in lieu of private law practice, broaden your horizons.

Lastly, HBS (and the M7 more generally) send roughly 25-30% of their class into consulting each year, but that does not fairly reflect a student's shot at those jobs. From a strictly compensation-driven perspective, hedge fund/PE/VC work is more coveted (and probably requires more sophisticated experience). Consulting is more of a default if you aren't more specially qualified in another field. I would think from a top MBA program your chances at a prominent consulting group are higher than 30%, but that's just speculation from data.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby fats provolone » Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:25 am

lol 30% chance of a good outcome? you see a lot of people recommending WUSTL @ sticker around here?

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BizBro

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby BizBro » Wed Dec 17, 2014 11:27 am

.
Last edited by BizBro on Tue Jan 13, 2015 7:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby UnicornHunter » Wed Dec 17, 2014 11:47 am

fats provolone wrote:lol 30% chance of a good outcome? you see a lot of people recommending WUSTL @ sticker around here?


There's not 1 good option with a MBA. Not going to shed a tear for people who get IBanking or Operations at Amazon out of a top B-school.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby DiniMae » Sat Dec 20, 2014 8:41 am

Voyager wrote:
FlamingDragon wrote:Thanks for the post, but for other readers, I would not assume the lifestyle at large consulting firms is better (and the pay is worse, with equal attrition). Of my 10-12 college classmates in MBB + Delloite, I know one who actually likes it and plans to stay. Numerous others have left. You will have to travel either 4 to 5 days a week and basically have little life outside of work, and there is no guarantee the work is going to be at all engaging as described here (it's a lot of excel bs).

Both paths are highly setting dependent but I would take higher pay and not traveling 9 times out of 10.


Starting pay was $135k base with a $20k signing bonus, a $20k-$30k performance bonus and ANOTHER $15k bonus put into a retirement account for you yearly.

All in, 1st year made $190k. Year 2 closer to $180k (raise, but not signing bonus).

You make partner in ~7 years. New partners are making $700k.

I left the firm before then and am clearing $250k, all in, similar to my 4th year buddies ONLY because of the good bonuses paid out by biglaw this year. Now I have minimal travel (few days a quarter) and work 50 hour work weeks.

Finally, the work is just more interesting at MBB. It is not "excel BS". It is solving interesting problems. You also get direct client interaction.


Thanks for the thread. It was enlightening. Can you say whether an enlisted vet will get the same positive views as officers?

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby hokuspokus » Tue Dec 23, 2014 3:31 am

LOL @ this thread.
None of this will pan out if you don't get top grades out of a top business school (according to a B-school friend of mine). They have their own version of OCI where the big firms recruit the top students.

Also law isn't the easiest way to make money. Isn't that common knowledge by now? Go be an investment banker on wall street straight out of ivy league undergrad instead. That way you don't even need to pay tuition for grad school.

DO NOT GO to law school if you just want to get rich.

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fats provolone

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby fats provolone » Tue Dec 23, 2014 1:19 pm

what does "top grades" at business school mean? don't they all have grade non-disclosure?

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby jingosaur » Tue Dec 23, 2014 11:57 pm

fats provolone wrote:what does "top grades" at business school mean? don't they all have grade non-disclosure?


This is correct. This is why everyone reading this should just go into investment banking and just never get fired. Because that's the easiest way to get rich. Or just have your parents give you a trust fund.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby igo2northwestern » Sun Jan 11, 2015 7:31 pm

jbagelboy wrote:Also, this website has a bizarre hangup with acronyms like "MBB". The field of consulting firms that do challenging and interesting work is far more encompassing. It's a little like repeating the only corporate law firms as Cravath, Davis Polk and S&C (very flawed analogy but at least somewhat descriptive). Some will have programs exclusively for undergrads and MBAs, some will be broader. The firm where I was an analyst was not one of these three but it was just a tier below, and we had JDs that started at the associate/manager level. Of course, some firms will have a specific industry clientele and they won't all be strategy work, but if you are seriously considering consulting in lieu of private law practice, broaden your horizons.

Lastly, HBS (and the M7 more generally) send roughly 25-30% of their class into consulting each year, but that does not fairly reflect a student's shot at those jobs. From a strictly compensation-driven perspective, hedge fund/PE/VC work is more coveted (and probably requires more sophisticated experience). Consulting is more of a default if you aren't more specially qualified in another field. I would think from a top MBA program your chances at a prominent consulting group are higher than 30%, but that's just speculation from data.

The analogy to Cravath/DPW/S&C isn't even close when we measure for other things. When you consider criteria such as hiring or exit opportunities, client mix, types of cases on the high level, every entry-level person will/should tell you that MBB is significantly more highly regarded. I'm not familiar with compensation below MBB, but I assume there's a gap as well.

The rest is fairly accurate -- about 15% of classes go to MBB from an M7 Bschool. A very small percentage comes from law schools, which is to say that if you spend all that time case prepping, you might as well shoot for some other consulting firms. The problem for JDs though, is that (apart from compensation comparisons with BigLaw) so few of those other consulting firms actually have structured programs for JD hiring, which causes a lot of issues (discussed on TLS already) from hiring to performance measure.

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Re: (Voyager) 4 years out. My advice? Go to business school

Postby lhanvt13 » Sun Jan 11, 2015 11:23 pm

Voyager, willing to be a mock interviewer/ critique a case practice?



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